Art and Politics in Nicaragua: A Conversation with Carlos Fernando Chamorro and Luis Enrique Mejía Godoy

This post is also available in: Español 

Photo of event summary card for Art and Politics in Nicaragua Main Image: Luis Enrique Mejía Godoy

On November 14, 2023, the Inter-American Dialogue welcomed Luis Enrique Mejía Godoy, a Nicaraguan singer, composer, poet, and social activist, and award-winning Nicaraguan journalist, Carlos Fernando Chamorro to a conversational and musical dialogue that reflected on the political situation in Nicaragua through art. After an introduction from Chamorro and Manuel Orozco, director of the Migration, Remittances, and Development program at the Dialogue, Mejía Godoy traced the close relationship between art and politics, the Madres de Abril and the importance of hope, and his experiences in Costa Rica and those of other Nicaraguans in exile. 

Throughout the event, Mejía Godoy not only touched upon these themes with words, but also through poetry and song. He discussed the traces of social movements in his music and detailed how his art has sought and fought for change in Nicaragua over the span of several decades. During the event, Mejía Godoy responded to questions with several compositions including: 

  • Terapia para el Desencanto (2018) 
  • Ama (2019) 
  • Blues del Camaléon  
  • Me quitaron todo (2023) 
  • Nicaragua, Nicaragüita (2000) 
  • Yo Soy de Un Pueblo Sencillo (1984) 

In the Q&A portion of the event, responding to a question concerning “armed conflict” in Nicarauga, Mejía Godoy cautioned he is neither a political analyst nor a journalist. However, pointing out the Ortega regime’s provocation of violence in 2018 to 2019, he expressed support for sanctions. In response to a question concerning the state of democracy in El Salvador, Mejía Godoy contrasted Nayib Bukele’s hidden dictatorial intentions and use of social media with the Ortega-Murillo regime. Mejía Godoy underscored that the two governments must leave if that is the people’s desire. 

When asked from where he derives his strength in the face of such sadness and adversity, Mejía Godoy pointed to his children, his grandchildren, and his desire to fight for a better Nicaragua. Mejía Godoy concluded the event with his song “Yo Soy de Un Pueblo Sencillo.”

"I am from a town born among rifle and song / That of so much suffering / Has much to teach / Brothers from so many towns, that have wanted to separate / Because they know that, although small, together we are a volcano / Because they know that, although small, together we are a volcano."

- Luis Enrique Mejía Godoy in “Yo Soy de Un Pueblo Sencillo”


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